How Does a Parent’s Mental Health Affect Custody in NJ?

How Does a Parent’s Mental Health Affect Custody in NJ?

mental health issues

How Does a Parent’s Mental Health Affect Custody in NJ?

A parent’s mental health can be a factor when courts decide on child custody in New Jersey. However, it will rarely be the deciding factor in whether or not a parent gets to see their child. The court wants to look out for the best interest of the child, and that usually means maintaining a relationship with both parents. If there is a way for a parent to safely spend time with their kids, the court will find it. Our Chatham child custody attorneys can help clients fight for custody or visitation rights.

Can a Parent’s Mental Health Prevent Them From Getting Custody?

In some cases, yes. The court will look at a few things when deciding whether or not a parent’s mental health issues should prevent them from getting physical custody. They can consider:

  • The parent’s history of hospitalization
  • Which specific issues a parent suffers from
  • How stable their home environment is
  • How compliant they are with treatment
  • If mental health issues will prevent the parent from meeting a child’s physical and emotional needs

A parent who suffers from severe issues or one who does not make the effort to treat their mental health problems is less likely to get any kind of custody than a parent who works hard to provide a stable home despite their own problems.

Can Mental Health Affect Visitation Arrangements?

In some cases, visitation rights can be granted to a parent with mental health issues, but there are still concerns about the child’s safety. This is when supervised visitation can be a good option. It’s safer for the child and still gives the parent and child a chance to work on their relationship.

There are professionals who can supervise a session, but sometimes a relative can also stand in. A grandparent, aunt, or uncle might be a good choice. The other parent is probably not an ideal supervisor though. You do not want a supervising parent to interfere with their child’s relationship with the other parent, even accidentally.

How Can a Lawyer Help Me?

If you are suffering from mental health issues, your lawyer can help you make the case that you are still able to care for your child. They can help you gather evidence and get testimony from medical professionals that can help you make a strong argument for custody or visitation rights.

If you suspect that your former spouse has mental health issues that could make your children unsafe, we can help you strengthen your argument and fight for a safe, fair arrangement for everyone.

Contact Our Law Firm Today

If you are fighting a custody battle, it can help to have an experienced family attorney on your side. Contact Lazor Rantas, PC and ask to schedule a consultation with our team. We can take a closer look at your case and tell you how we can be of assistance.

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